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Does having a master's degree increase your ability to be hired?

Will employers see the master's degree as an advantage? If so, is it worth a students time to seek one during/after college? #engineer #professor #professional

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Nicole’s Answer

Hi Quentin K. I see that you posted this question a little while ago so I hope my answer to you (or others who may read this response) is still helpful.

In general terms, having a masters degree can play a big role in getting hired and getting a good starting salary but, as someone who has worked in the tech field for all of her career, I share that there is a lot of value that hiring companies put on job candidates that have in-demand skill sets, that were learned either in the space of a different job and/or getting a bachelors/associates degree/certification.

I have seen, during times of high demand, where companies will incentivize job applicants in the areas of higher salaries and/or signing bonuses, travel opportunities and other benefits, to come on board for jobs...even if that applicant doesn't have a masters degree. As in the previous answer provided, depending on what the masters degree is in, I agree that a masters degree holder can start with a better salary. I share though that a better starting salary does not always equate to maintaining a higher salary. This comes with many other inputs including job responsibilities, years of service, the significance of projects worked and success in results.

Hope you find this answer helpful and best of luck to you!

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mathias’s Answer

Yes! I live in Sweden and have recruited people every now and then over a long period of time.

Key things I look for in new hires are:
1) Personal impression - would you fit into our workplace?
2) Energy, drive, where are you going? What is your key interests... does it match what we are looking for?
3) Proof points of consistent performance -- strong references help but not relevant if it is your first job. Here a completed degree is very valuable. Stating that "I took the classes and learned all I need but didn't bother to finish" is not the best line. Completion the masters degree is a proof point that you get things done. That is good!

But then again, the degree is not critical. Personally I got a job and worked for a 1.5 years before actually completing my masters degree. But that was back in 1988 and skilled IT professionals were scares to say the least

One more thing - of two persons with similar jobs and background, the one with a masters degree is typically better paid